Army OneSource Co-Organized Summit to Address Capacity and Connectivity for Sustainable Development of a National Legal Services Network

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The Military and Veterans Legal Network Summit provided a platform to gather expertise and guidance from stakeholders across several sectors who can contribute to building and using a Network to benefit our Military-affiliated population.

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Ultimately, this network will increase service capacity and connectivity at the local, state and national levels in administrative, civil and criminal law, said Shaunya Murrill, Chief of Outreach & Strategic Integration at United States Army IMCOM

For more than a year, Army OneSource and the American Bar Association have collaborated on a concept, the development of a National Military and Veterans Legal Services Network. In order to advance the innovative idea to operational impact, the Military and Veterans Legal Network Summit was held on June 23-24 in the nation’s capital.

Professionals from 121 organizations across the country joined together to discuss two common themes – legal capacity and connectivity to improve legal outcomes for Service members, their Families, Veterans, Survivors and Caregivers. The first-of-its-kind national legal summit collected expertise and guidance from stakeholders across several sectors who can contribute to building and using the Network to benefit our Military-affiliated population.

“Our challenges as a nation – national, state, tribal, local – are born from two gaps: Capacity and Connectivity. Capacity isn’t about employing more lawyers – it’s about increasing the opportunities for assistance even among existing ones in order to meet the demand. And it’s not enough that there simply be more opportunities. They must connect, actively, such that the community can better respond to emerging crises,” said Kenneth Goldsmith, Senior Legislative Counsel and Director of State Legislation at the American Bar Association.

As co-organizers of the Military and Veterans Legal Network Summit, Army OneSource and the American Bar Association assigned over 150 participants to seven interdisciplinary work teams representing geographic and subject matter diversity. From Military leadership and policy makers to legal professionals and caregivers, each team was comprised of diverse perspectives. The Summit included thoughtful discussions from COL Adam Rocke, Director of the Soldier for Life Program for the Chief of Staff of the Army; Shaunya Murrill, Chief of Outreach & Strategic Integration at United States Army Installation Management Command; and Linda Klein, President-Elect of the American Bar Association. Much of the agenda was dedicated to work team sessions that were led by Army OneSource professional facilitators who guided teams through planning activities that identified gaps, barriers and opportunities and developed recommendations for the development and operation of a national military legal services network.

Key note speakers included, the Honorable Patrick Murphy, the Under Secretary of the U.S. Army, who addressed the audience with a poignant perspective as a third generation Veteran. Former U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Dole, founder of the Elizabeth Dole Foundation, which was founded for, and is exclusively given to, representing Veteran Caregivers and Matt Stiner, Director of Military & Veterans Affairs at The White House.

“Engaging with individuals of this caliber – those with extensive knowledge and expertise – demonstrated the desire and true need for improved legal outcomes for our Service members, their Families and Veterans. The intent of the Summit was to gather expertise and ideas generated by the Work Teams, and then synthesize this information into a comprehensive report that guides our next action steps to better serving our Military population through a national legal network. Ultimately, this network will increase service capacity and connectivity at the local, state and national levels in administrative, civil and criminal law,” said Shaunya Murrill, Chief of Outreach & Strategic Integration at United States Army Installation Management Command.

The Military and Veterans Legal Network Summit was made possible by Army OneSource, the American Bar Association, Jones Day Law Firm, and Summit sponsor, The Bob Woodruff Foundation.

Media Contact:
Shaunya Murrill, Chief of Outreach & Strategic Integration, United States Army Installation Management Command, Army OneSource, 210.792.3449, Shaunya.M.Murrill.civ(at)mail(dot)mil

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